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Butler Intermodal Terminal seeks Midwest customers

A train stops by a facility. Image: Iowa Northern Railway

The newly opened Butler Intermodal Terminal in Shell Rock, Iowa, is seeking customers wanting an alternative to larger Midwest rail hubs and long-haul trucking.

Logistics firm Valor Victoria, shortline Iowa Northern Railway, terminal operator Watco and Class I railroad Union Pacific (NYSE: UNP) are offering an intermodal service at the Butler Intermodal Terminal in December that focuses on the international markets, the group said on Nov. 21.

The service will consist of Union Pacific, which connects to the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach in California, interchanging with Iowa Northern, which will then provide final delivery to the Butler Intermodal Terminal, the group said. 

The group also said customers with export volumes will have access to a “consistent” intermodal container supply in central Iowa to the U.S. West Coast.

“Iowa Northern is thrilled to be part of this remarkable new service product for Iowa industries

seeking strategic solutions to maintain a competitive global presence in the marketplace,” said

Iowa Northern Railway President Daniel Sabin. Iowa Northern also provides transloading services and supports the local grain and renewable energy industries, FreightWaves wrote in May when it reported about a railcar facility that Trinity Industries is developing in Shell Rock.

At the terminal, Watco will handle the intermodal containers upon arrival and departure, as well as provide drayage service. Watco will also coordinate transload activities for customers need to reload containers bound for export to West Coast destinations. 

Joanna Marsh

Joanna is a Washington, DC-based writer covering the freight railroad industry. She has worked for Argus Media as a contributing reporter for Argus Rail Business and as a market reporter for Argus Coal Daily.